What is meant by the term ‘Non-Duality’
Non-duality is the translation of the Sanskrit word Advaita (a-dvaita). This refers to the ancient Hindu philosophy called Advaita Vedanta, the essence of which is: creation and creator are one (not two).
For thousands of years and in all great cultures this essence has been the deepest universal incentive for people to express their religious feelings, as we know these in many different ways and in varying degrees of comprehensibility. In this context I recommend you to read my article: Truth Will Set You Free: Time Does Not Exist.
Today so many people are talking about non-duality that it seems that everyone understands that he is ‘united with his creator for ever’. But unfortunately, that´s not the case. Even worse, I have the impression that most of today´s non-dualists believe ‘non-duality’ just to be a philosophy of the ‘fundamental unity of all existence’.
Although not wrong, this is much too simple and misses completely the depth of the message. Do you really think that the secret of non-duality has been passed on (orally) as spiritual inspiration for thousands of years, only to teach people that ‘all are one?’
What is needed is the realization of the unity of man and his origin (the thought that there is no origin does not hold, because nothing can appear from nothing).
There have always been people who felt the urge to testify and to teach about the ‘Truth’ they had dis-covered. In the ancient days it was the ‘rishi´s’ (sages of India) who taught about the unity between man and his origin (called Brahman in Hinduism) as later Buddha did (without mentioning a primal cause). Later again it was Jesus Christ who testified that he and his father (God, meaning origin ) are one.
In spite of these seers the meaning of their message seems to be lost in our society. In relation with Christianity in this context, in the article mentioned above I explained this further and I also said: ‘The consequences of the omitting of the incentive for people to realize the timeless themselves are of an importance beyond our comprehension’.
And yes, so it is. I think that the fact that man (‘the world’) is not aware of his oneness with his origin anymore, is in the end the cause of the critical situation our world is in today.
Why is it so sad that people are not aware of their oneness with their origin
Living without knowing the divine womb where we all came from allows our mind to identify with visible phenomena only, which causes uncertainty (to be or not to be) and thus egoism, the original sin.
As you will understand: the imbalance between selfish and selfless behavior during human history has finally resulted in the vulnerable condition our civilization is in today.
It may look strange that the lack of knowledge of the Absolute (as the source of life) is ultimately the cause of all misery in the world. But it is, because where man has potentially the ability of realizing himself to be created in ‘God`s image’, he stays fundamentally unhappy as long as this spiritual destiny has not been fulfilled. And this exactly is the reason for his endless suffering, foolishness and egoism.
In said article I ‘accused’ Christianity to be responsible for straying from the vision of unity with our creator (discouraging people to think for themselves, denial of the possibility to know ‘God’ etc.).
In relation to this I also said: ‘Where religion should touch a man in the very depth of his being (in the euphoria of experiencing unity with the radiant and inexhaustible source of life) a superficial notion of profound teachings remains.
Not only can this lead to doubt and rejection, but also our deeply hidden ethical consciousness (which wants us to act and to be in harmony with the timeless which has become us) is not or insufficiently touched.’
It would not be difficult to fill an encyclopedia with all the ‘things which went wrong’ because of man´s incompetence to live by their ethical consciousness. Everyone will understand what I mean by this.
The points that I want to make in this context are:
– how to make it understandable that it is indeed non-duality which all people are looking for
– in what way can people come to the realization of their oneness with the Absolute
– the meaning of religion
– looking forward
How to make it understandable that it is indeed non-duality which all people are looking for
Of all forms of life only we as humans are striving for happiness. I mean, animals are totally conditioned by their instincts. We are partially and have some ‘free will’ left which we can use to fill in our own life. It is up to us whether this free will is a blessing or a disaster (in this context ignoring internal and external influences).
In the first sentence of the previous paragraph I said that our identifying with ‘visible phenomena only’ is the cause of egoism, which I consider to be our original sin. To understand this please consider the following: generally speaking we are not familiar with meditation, which means that we identify with all impressions which enter our mind, from outside or from within. This identifying with our daily reality of transient events and things happens automatically, because the (non-alert) mind clings to everything that enters consciousness. At the same time all of us are born with the urge to become….. ‘what we potentially are’.
Not being aware of this hidden reason for our striving for happiness we assume that we will find happiness from the impressions that enter our mind. However, no matter how we cling to these impressions, lasting happiness is not to be found. Not understanding that we are on the wrong track, our needs increase continually which makes us egoistic. All evil (‘sin’) comes from man´s egoism.
Our natural striving for happiness expresses itself in different stages of life in different ways. Everyone knows this, but who knows what happiness is? When you have achieved something of which you thought it would make you happy, then after some time you need another goal to go for.
And, as you may have noticed yourself, this continues as long as you go for ‘transient events and things’.
So, what can we do, to avoid that at the end of our lives we still have not found happiness?
We should become aware that ‘visible phenomena only’ will never give us the happiness we are looking for. Did you notice however that visible expressions of nature like sunrise, mountains, oceans, children’s eyes etc. give us a certain feeling of happiness? If so, accept these ‘hints’ to be an invitation to look for happiness in ‘nature’s permanent manifestations’.
I wonder if I may suggest to you here to consider to accept that happiness in general is only to be found in permanent, non-changing things. A loving family, a group of like-minded people, a reliable partner, these are things that make life worth living.
The reason why it is like this, is that we identify (feel one) with family, people or partner. We are lucky when life gives us this kind of happiness, but we also know that situations like these are temporary and fragile.
Above I said: At the same time all of us are born with the urge to become….. ‘what we potentially are’.
With this I mean to say that our pursuit of happiness aims at more than the examples given here. It will be clear, however, that I also do not mean that fulfilling our potential to become an actor, a banker, a pop star or whatever profession, can be our guarantee for happiness. There must be more and yes, there is.
Please consider this: ‘There is no human being in the world, no animal, no plant – literally nothing in the world – that came into being by itself. Man is ignorant of the fact that he is an expression of a ‘cosmic, conscious, creative principle’. This unknown primal cause has become all that lives—including us, as human beings’.
This quote from my book ‘Initiation into Reality’ (Part II 2.01) might be a reason for you to argue about, but in that case I suggest you read the explanation in the book itself.
For now I just want you to become aware that the whole of creation must necessarily have a first cause. However, as you know, the first cause discussion always leads to the ‘cause´s cause’ question (the chicken and the egg).